Alvar Aalto
Through the Eyes of Shigeru Ban
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22 February 2007 - 13 May 2007
Barbican Art Gallery

Part of 25th landmark events


Tickets: Tickets online £6
£8 on the door
Open daily 11am - 8pm, excluding Tue & Thu 11am - 6pm.
subject to availability

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At long last, an exhibition devoted to one of Modernism's great hero's.
Time Out

Finnish architect Alvar Aalto (1898-1976), is one of the masters of
modernism, ranking alongside figures such as Le Corbusier and Mies van
der Rohe. In his first UK retrospective, Aalto’s work is presented
through the eyes of contemporary Japanese architect Shigeru Ban.

The exhibition examines the development of Aalto’s architectural style,
featuring models, drawings, photographs and artefacts from 14 of his key
projects, built mainly in Finland, Denmark and across Scandinavia.
Spanning six decades, featured projects include Paimio Tuberculosis
Sanatorium (1929-33), Villa Mairea (1938-39), AA-System Houses
(1937-1945), Experimental House (1952-53), North Jutland Art Museum
(1958-72) and the development of the urban centre for Seinäjoki (1952-87).

Aalto was as concerned with the interiors of his buildings as he was
with the structure, and the exhibition also showcases his wide-ranging
product designs. These include his famous stacking stool and other
furniture, as well as glassware, light fittings and textiles, many of
which continue to be manufactured today by the renowned Finnish design
company Artek, founded in 1935.

Aalto admired the commitment to craftsmanship and sensitivity to natural
materials that he found in Japanese architecture, and 60 years later
this influence comes full circle in the work of Shigeru Ban. The
exhibition showcases many of Ban’s key works which acknowledge a huge
debt to Aalto’s organic approach to design.

Ban is famous for his use of natural and recyclable materials such as
cardboard, bamboo and wood, and the exhibition features celebrated
projects such as his Paper Log House (1995), Japan Pavilion, Hanover
Expo (2000) and his recent design for the new Pompidou Centre in Metz.

This fascinating exhibition which explores the themes linking these two
influential architects who, despite spanning a generational and
geographical divide, share a visionary approach to architecture.

Curated by Shigeru Ban in collaboration with Juhani Pallasmaa and Tomoko
Sato. Organised by Barbican Art Gallery in conjunction with the Alvar
Aalto Museum, Jyväskylä.

Supported by Embassy of Finland and The Japan Foundation